The first meeting between President Joe Biden’s administration and Chinese officials late Thursday revealed just how far tensions between the two countries have escalated.
Secretary of State Tony Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan met with their Chinese counterparts in Anchorage, Alaska, laying out all of the “deep concerns” the U.S. has about the communist country. President Joe Biden made clear prior to the meeting that it would not be the start to a dialogue, merely a declaration of where the U.S. stands. Blinken and Sullivan ripped into China’s “genocide” against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang and its destruction of democracy in Hong Kong, among other issues. (RELATED: President Biden Launches Pentagon Task Force To Counter China)
Together with the Chinese response, Blinken’s opening statement lasted for more than an hour. His Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi, delivered a 15-minute response in Chinese, reported Reuters.
The Chinese officials argued the U.S. was overstepping into “internal matters” with criticisms of Xinjiang and Hong Kong. They also argued American democracy was “struggling” and attributed ongoing racial strife in the U.S. to America’s “mistreatment” of minorities.
While Biden has adopted a less aggressive line against China, his policies and goals mirror those of former President Donald Trump. Defeating China’s goals on the global stage appears to a bipartisan issue in the U.S., with politicians only disagreeing on how pressing the issue is. (RELATED: US Sanctions 24 Officials Over China’s Latest Crackdown On Hong Kong)
“I have many policy disagreements with the Biden Administration, but every single American should unite against Beijing’s tyrants,” Republican Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse said in a statement. “Secretary Blinken and National Security Adviser Sullivan were right to say ‘it’s never good to bet against America’ and should continue to hold firm exposing Chairman Xi’s fraudulent lies.”